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Lack Of Stellar Signings Means David Moyes' Hard Work Starts Now

Wednesday 4th September 2013
If David Moyes was ever under any illusion as to how big the job of replacing Sir Alex was then he is soon going to realise it just got a lot harder.

This transfer window has been a disaster for Manchester United and has left the supporters feeling distinctly underwhelmed. At the beginning of the summer there was a wave of optimism at Old Trafford, the club had been champions by a long distance last season and all the talk was about a large financial backing to be given to the new manager. Fans eagerly awaited a raft of signings and the new manager seemed to have noticed what everyone else had been saying for the past few years that central midfield was the area that needed strengthening the most.

At clubs like Manchester United once the season starts the games come thick and fast. It is often the case of playing two games a week, the majority of training is taken up with keeping players fit and preparing for upcoming games. Managers don't have as much time to bring in their own philosophy or playing style, this is mainly done in pre-season which is why it is imperative for clubs to get their business done early so that new players can be implemented into the team and the playing style.

Which begs the question why did a club of the stature of Manchester United make so many mistakes?

The approach seemed to lack common sense and has now hindered the club and disappointed the fans.

Looking back at all the gossip and stories that floated around during the window it left me confused as to how it came to happen like this. First of all there was the talk of Thiago whether this signing was ever going to happen or not only a few people know but from looking in from the outside it never looked likely. Thiago's agent is Pere Guardiola who is Pep's brother so realistically there was only ever going to be one club he was going to leave Barcelona for. So once Barca had lost one central midfielder it would seem very doubtful that they would sell another one in Fabregas especially at a loss. Yet this is exactly what Manchester United tried to do, they put in a bid for Cesc which was below his market value and also below what the Catalan club had originally paid for him. It was never going to work. On top of that since Fabregas moved to Barca he has played a lot of his football further forward on the pitch and has even been used as a false 9 a number of times. When Man Utd have Rooney, Kagawa and Welbeck who play behind or with Van Persie then tactically it didn't make much sense either.

The Herrera deal was another farce.... Athletic Bilbao are unlike many other clubs in that you have to be born in the Basque area to qualify to play for the club so reinforcements are not easy to come by. They stick rigorously to the release clauses in players contracts and wont give up players cheaply, you only have to look at Javi Martinez's transfer to Bayern as proof. So if I know this then surely Manchester United, David Moyes and Edward Woodward know this. So if they have all the facts then why make an offer below the buy out clause? Its quite simple you either think the player is worth the money and pay it or you don't and don't waste your time making a bid. Especially when the amount that you are out is a few million which is less than the difference of what they could of got Fellaini for in July when his buy out clause was still in play.

Fellaini is undoubtedly a good player and is proven in the Premier League. He is also a player that Moyes knows well so will know whether he can step up or not. He will also know the players contract situation. Everyone knew that he had a buy out clause of £23.5 million so why wait until after that clause has finished and then pay £27.5 million for him on deadline day when 3 games of the season have gone.

The other issue is the position of left back. In my opinion Patrice Evra had a good season last year and seemed to of picked himself up out of the slump he had been for the 2 previous seasons. Early in the summer Moyes went to Everton with a bid for Leighton Baines which was turned down, they then waited nearly a month before making another bid for Baines. Then on transfer deadline day there is a story released that they tried to sign Real Madrid left back Fabio Coentrao on loan. All that has happened through all this public transfer bids and failures is that no new left back has been signed and the current left back Patrice Evra is most likely demotivated now.

Moyes has had a tough start to his career at Old Trafford with a number of tough games early and more to come with the match against Manchester City not far away. He wont be used to having such a big budget and may have tried to get as good value as possible by not paying high rates for players but this back fired in that he has only got one target that he could of signed earlier for less money.

Edward Woodward needs to get to grips with the murky world of transfer dealings and use this window as a learning curve and ensure these amateur dealings don't happen again.

The club as a whole need to learn to get their business done early and not talk about their transfer targets before they have signed them. They should also learn not to talk about how much money they have and encourage talk of signing mega players like Gareth Bale and Ronaldo.

David Moyes now has to take stock of the players he does have and work on getting results quickly to keep the fans on side. He has to keep the fans happy while keeping the players motivated starting with Evra whose ego will of clearly been bruised the attempts to replace him.

The funniest thing is that if at the beginning of the window you told a Manchester United fan that they would add Fellaini to a squad that won the Premier League by 11 points last season the majority of them would be happy. It just all the talk that came out of the club that built the fans hopes up only to leave them disappointed at the last hurdle. Moyes has been hindered by his club and no the hard work to get everyone singing from the same hymn sheet starts.
Nathan Angus

Total articles: 11

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